How to treat sebaceous hyperplasia

Sebaceous Hyperplasia

What can you do about sebaceous hyperplasia?

Have you had a combination or oily skin for years?  After I turned 40, I suddenly found small bumps with a whitish rim just below my eyes and realised I had the skin problem sebaceous hyperplasia. 

What is sebaceous hyperplasia?

Sebaceous hyperplasia is the term used for enlarged sebaceous glands which are benign little bumps on the skin.  These bumps are the result of damage which leads to overproduction of sebum by the sebaceous gland.  The damaged sebaceous glands can become enlarged or blocked.  This turns them into bumps that may be soft or hard with a white or yellow surface.  They look like a tiny white donut as they appear to be indented in the middle.  This indented centre is characteristic of sebaceous hyperplasia.  I did think at first it was a milia (whitehead) but after speaking with a dermatologist, I had it confirmed as sebaceous hyperplasia.

You often get several bumps at the same time and they can be close together or spaced out.  Sebaceous hyperplasia often occurs on the forehead and in the middle of the face.  The bumps can also appear on the body, especially where there are many sebaceous glands under the skin.

What is the cause of sebaceous hyperplasia?

The main cause of this skin problem is long-term exposure to the sun.   UV damages the skin and the sebaceous glands.  Having been a sun worshipper in the 80’s (weren’t we all ?) – its something I have come to regret in middle age.

My personal experience

Please note that some sebaceous hyperplasia bumps look like a form of skin cancer known as basal cell carcinoma – so always see a dermatologist first for the correct diagnosis.

How do you get rid of it?

There are skincare products you can use at home to keep the bumps under control:

JL Exfoliating Cleanser which contains salicylic acid.  Using this cleanser once in the morning and twice in the evening.   Salicylic Acid helps to gently exfoliate dead skin cells however it is renown for it’s ability to deeply clean our the pores of sebum!

JL Smart Retinol delivering vitamin A to the deeper layers normalising the skin, reducing oil production in these combination/oily skin types.  Clinical studies have proven that retinol (vitamin A) is effective in fighting sebaceous hyperplasia.  It tells the cells to act ‘normally’ again so they can return to their original shape, resulting in an improved skin structure.

Perfect Skin Serum which contains niacinamide (vitamin B3) which is a cell-communicating ingredient that helps regulate excessive sebum production and repairs the skin’s protective barrier.

The combination of salicylic acid, retinol and niacinamide visibly helps reduce sebaceous hyperplasia.

Avoid scrubs as the problem is deep in the skin, underneath the surface in the sebaceous gland. A scrub only works on the surface of your skin. My concern is if you scrub away at the bumps overzealously, you may damage your skin and cause other skin problems such as dryness and irritation.

Dermatologists may recommend the following:

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) skin rejuvenation treatment in which you would have several appointments or a course of treatments.  The light has a cauterising effect.

Laser vaporisation.